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Consumers opt for global, rather than local brands — stakeholder

By Bahaa Al Deen Al Nawas - Sep 22,2019 - Last updated at Sep 22,2019

Many consumers have shifted from local to global clothing brands, according to Amman Chamber of Commerce representative, Asaad Qawasmi (JT file photo)

AMMAN — From an evaluation of consumer behaviour in the clothing and footwear sector, it was found that many people have shifted from buying local clothing brands to global ones, especially during sales seasons, according to the Amman Chamber of Commerce representative, Asaad Qawasmi.

"In all seasons, trust in global brands has increased competition with local clothing, especially in big shopping centres and malls, which provide the convenience of parking, fun, competitive prices and quality brand clothes," Qawasmi said.

There are 122 apparel brands in Jordan, 16 of which belong to foreign companies, he said, noting that they are concentrated in six big shopping centres in Amman, and 12 other malls in Amman and other governorates.

Sales and other promotions have increased causing brand prices to fall near the range of local attire companies. According to Qawasmi, this drop is owed partly to a decrease in consumers' purchasing capabilities.

"This is neither positive nor negative for the sector, it is a mere observation of a consuming habit, it benefits the consumers more than it does the sector," he said, noting that the market's transition is still weak but the clothing sector still suffers. 

President of the Textile and Readymade Clothes Syndicate Muneer Deyeh said the market is open for competition as long as the government does not intervene with pricing or the volume of goods available.

He added that, based on supply and demand, quality and price, consumers can choose where they want to shop, which increases competition, especially in the clothing and footwear sector.

"Therefore, whatever is showcased in regular, brand or outlet shops, anywhere in the Jordanian market, gives a positive edge in the sense that the variation meets the demands of all segments of society," Deyeh said. 

He noted that this does not mean citizens have stopped going to traditional shops, but that some are leaning towards more globalised brands, especially as the majority of the population belongs to the middle and lower classes who cannot afford international brands or shopping at malls, except when there are bountiful sales, which mostly happen at the end of a season.

Challenges facing the sector, as highlighted by both Qawasmi and Deyeh earlier, include illegal e-commerce, "mail-package" trade and the spread of haphazard markets, causing an overflow of shopping malls in areas that are very close to each other.

These things, combined with customs fees and taxes sometimes reaching 47 per cent, cause “shopping tourism” in the Kingdom to lose its competitive edge in the region, according to the representative.

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